The Odyssey: The Creation Of The Gods

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On the surface, the Odyssey depicts the gods as all-powerful beings manipulating humans in pursuit of their own ends while the humans are the poor pawns of some celestial chess match. However, it is important to remember that the myths of the gods were constructed by humans and that there is logic behind the creation of them. Upon deeper reflection, both gods and humans gain something from the existence of the other party whether it is some material exchange or a subconscious mental reward. The relationship between gods and humans is characterized by mutually beneficial exchanges that demonstrate a human need for comfort, comprehension, and order in a chaotic and unknown world. Surely the gods and goddesses in Homer’s story use and manipulate …show more content…
They gave the godly figure power and from that humans eliminated the need to take responsibility for the events of their lives upon themselves. The hierarchy of Olympus, the home of the gods, is modeled after the Greek system in terms of who has the most power and what that possession of power allows them to do. The line of authority in Olympus is based on power which in the Greek society is equated with physical and supernatural strength. Therefore, it is the strongest god, Zeus, who rules over the rest of the gods and goddesses because “Zeus has the aegis and no of us can oppose his will” (Homer 74), but he is also held most responsible for both the bad and the good in the world. Within this idea there is the concept that power gives one the right to do whatever they want which is true of the gods in the Odyssey. It is the will of the gods that determines the fate of the humans and that is responsible for all the happens in the world. This placement of the gods into a relatable system of power gives order to human lives because it provides a clear, comprehensible social structure. With this placement of gods above humans in terms of power comes the assignation of a role a judge or punisher. The gods having this role gives more status to the gods and also comfort to humans as it promises some form of retribution for their enemies. The human concept that the gods …show more content…
From the relationship between the groups is like a social contract in which gods get power and dominion while humans get safety and understanding. The divine beings in the book closely mirror humans due to the fact that they are human conceptions meant to help humans understand the chaos of the world. Traits that the Greek people valued such as strength, beauty, wisdom, loyalty are embodied by the images of the gods. But along with the respected traits the gods are characterized as selfish, vain, and temperamental which causes them act contrary to those values. This can be seen in the story “of the passion/ between Ares and gold-crowned Aphrodite, / How they first made love in Hephaestus’ house” (Homer 115). The Greeks value loyalty, but even the gods can represent the opposite of those values like Ares and Aphrodite did when they committed adultery. The idea of the gods will as the ultimate law is what provides humans with order, but the stories of the gods gives a relatable image of those who are said to be in power. The stories are a way to help reassure humans that the gods’ will is correct because they understand the gods’ actions. Furthermore, these valued traits that define the gods in Greek society are applied to humans who then seen as “godlike”. Penelope, defined by her beauty, wisdom, and loyalty was described in this way by the phrase “the

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